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World Meningitis Day

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The race is on to defeat meningitis by 2030: speak up to save a life


World Meningitis Day is the annual moment to bring people together from all over the world, united in the need to raise awareness of meningitis, its signs and symptoms, the vaccines that are available to protect against it, and that it is a global threat that needs global action to be defeated.


To reach all corners of the world, we need your help to spread the word. That’s why our digital toolkit has been developed: to help everyone who believes meningitis should be defeated, raise awareness and let the leaders of every country know that this is an issue that we want global action on.


All the resources are free for anyone to download, and can be used alongside our campaign messaging, without any restrictions.


Some are available in multiple languages (including English, French, Spanish and Arabic) so please do use them, and share them with your networks, so that everyone can understand the impact of the disease, the signs and symptoms to watch out for and the vaccines available to protect against it.


We’ve also developed campaign messaging that can be adapted to suit your activity, whatever it may be. Just pick the individual points that are most relevant for you and the country you are in, and mix any with any of the social media templates in the toolkit to suit your audience.


The race is on to defeat meningitis.  Now is the time to unite and raise our voices together. Get started using the campaign resources below – and don’t forget to check out five actions you can take to support the campaign and our tips for getting the media spotlight on your World Meningitis Day news

Five simple actions to support World Meningitis Day


  1. Join the global movement, be part of the conversation and help make meningitis a global health priority. Use either of the campaign hashtags, #DefeatMeningitis or #WorldMeningitisDay.

  2. Speak up to save a life - use any of the toolkit files to add a great image to your post, tweet, video or blog.

  3. Don’t wait till 5th October to start telling people: we’re a global movement demanding global action to defeat meningitis. Let’s make every day to 2030 count.

  4. Don’t forget to take action on the 5th October too. We want to make this World Meningitis Day louder than ever so every time you post, share or tell others in any way it helps make that happen.

  5. Want to do more? There are plenty of ways to get involved from making a donation, to sharing your personal experience of meningitis or choose something to illuminate at 20.30 (8.30pm) on 5th October, in support of the Global Road Map’s vision of defeating meningitis by 2030 and in remembrance of everyone who has lost their life, or had their life changed forever, because of meningitis. Whatever you do – remember to share it on social as we'd love to see it.



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Tips for getting the media spotlight on your World Meningitis Day news


Are you working on something exciting to mark World Meningitis Day? 


Perhaps you have some news you want to share and you’re looking to get media interest, but you’re not quite sure how to improve your chances of making the headlines?


Then look no further, these tips are just for you.


1. Identify your meningitis news hook


For something to be newsworthy it needs to be new.

People read the news because they want to find out about something that they don’t already know. The more unusual or unexpected it is, the more of interest it’s likely to be to the person reading it.

Ask yourself, what is different about your meningitis story? What don’t people already know and why would they want or need to know this? Highlight the unusual - perhaps it’s the first of a kind? Or maybe it’s the only one of something. Think superlatives - biggest, fastest, largest, tallest, oldest.


And remember, people care about people. So what’s the human interest angle of your story? Size and scale make great news angles, so is this something that could be included? Does it draw people together? Or perhaps your story involves a lot of people across a large geographical area, united by a common goal? Or maybe it involves an element of history – a long standing tradition or the third generation of the same family taking part in an activity?


This year we are asking everyone to mark World Meningitis Day by sharing their experience of meningitis and helping to light the road ahead by illuminating something unusual up at 20.30 (8.30pm) - these could be great local news stories.


2. Take a great photo


A picture says a thousand words. So, try to create a photo opportunity that reflects what you’re talking about to help generate interest in your story.

Faces work really well (just be sure you have everyone’s consent to be in the image) and think about the smaller details. What’s the background for your photo? Does it reflect what you’re trying to say about your organisation? Maybe there is an opportunity for some branding? Think T-shirts for fundraisers or pull-up banners publicising your activity.

It’s worth investing the time in a great photo because it may just be the difference between whether or not a story gets used.

3. Think about the best media targets


One you have a great news angle it’s all about finding the best way to share your story with the people you want to hear about it, so they’ll take action.

When you think of media, people tend to think of national broadcasters or newspapers. But the most successful media coverage is about making sure you get your message in front of those you want to see it.

So think about what your news angle is - what do you want people to know and who needs to know it? Once you know this you can work out who is going to be interested in your story and the best way to reach them.

Start small and cover all bases. Look at all the media in your area. Your local newspaper and radio station are a great place to start. But don’t forget about a community newsletter or maybe even a student radio station.

Do you have any specialist news outlets, like trade titles, that might suit your audience and be interested in what you have to say? Or perhaps you know a blogger that might be interested.

Remember it’s all about spreading the word. So, once you’ve pitched your story, don’t forget to share it across your own social channels using the hashtags #DefeatMeningitis and #WorldMeningitisDay, and enlist the support of your followers to share it further.

Good luck!

The clock is ticking to 2030. 

Join the race to defeat meningitis. 

Help spread life-saving awareness 


Getting involved in World Meningitis Day


Want to do more? 

We have plenty of ways to get involved in our World Meningitis Day campaign.

Fairy Lights

Have you been directly impacted by meningitis? We want to unite 2030 voices from around the world to share their experiences of meningitis. Join us to help others understand the true impact of this disease and play your part in making a world free of meningitis become a reality.

Stay informed

Sign up to the Meningitis Research Foundation’s monthly emails on how we are working to defeat meningitis, with news on the latest science, meningitis vaccines, and health policy developments.

Don’t want emails? Join us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or LinkedIn and help us remind world leaders why we want to defeat meningitis by 2030.


Every year, World Meningitis Day brings together people from all over the world to highlight the need to raise awareness of meningitis, its signs and symptoms, the vaccines that are available, and that it is an infection that needs global attention and effort to be defeated.


Meningitis Research Foundation is an international charity which began in the UK in 1989. We’ve been working to defeat meningitis and septicaemia wherever they exist for over 30 years. The Confederation of Meningitis Organizations (CoMO) is our global network of patient groups, meningitis advocates, and health professionals. They work to reduce the incidence and impact of meningitis in more than 50 countries.

#DefeatMeningitis #WorldMeningitisDay

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© Confederation of Meningitis Organisations and Meningitis Research Foundation, 2023
A charity registered in England and Wales no 1091105, in Scotland no SC037586, & in Ireland 20034368
A company limited by guarantee, registered in England no 4367866
Registered Office: Room 715, The Programme Building 7th Floor, The Pithay, Bristol BS1 2NB

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